Arch Bars Again

Guy Wilber


The date of the banning of Arch Bar trucks in interchange has probably been
beat to death, but...

Many railroads, private car owners, and the American Petroleum Institute
lobbied hard during the late 1930s for several extensions of the date to ban
arch bars. The "final" date was extended several times (on a nearly yearly
basis) with a final mandated date of July 1, 1940. This "final" date was
voted on and overwhemingly approved by the member roads of the AAR; the
result was announced in Circular No. D. V. - 975, dated March 20, 1940.

Within this final agreement was the approval of the use of cars for loading
or unloading (equipped with arch bars) within the same switching district in
which the switching occured; also the revision of the present note to Rule 3;
excepting industrial or other cars not intended for interchange service from
the provision of the rule in their initial movement from manufacturer to
destination of seaboard.

Within my data I find no conclusive mention of a further extension to July,
1941. There is no member road vote listed (via letter ballot) within the
1941 AAR Mechanical Division "Proceedings". Was this extension granted by
the AARs' Board of Directors (as was the case in several of the previous
extensions)? If July, 1941 was indeed the final date, can anyone here
provide conclusive information via AAR interchange rules book and/or other


Guy Wilber
Sparks, Nevada

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